FIRST STEP: CLEANING IN A QUALITY DRY CLEANING
Your dress has an emotional value, it is part of the memories of your great day and you want to keep clean and neat. To do this, start by having it cleaned without waiting too long, so that the possible stains become too difficult to remove (within 15 days after the wedding).
Look for a quality dry cleaner who will take care of such precious clothes, and above all, who is used to taking care of them. Once again, choose quality over price, you need a dry cleaner that works the old-fashioned way, who respects the fibres of the fabric of your dress and not a cheap dry cleaners, who maybe faster, but that will not guarantee you a satisfactory result.
This type of clothing is indeed very complex to clean, by the quality of the textiles used, which often need a special treatment (like linen that is very hard to iron if cleaned with water, or silk that loses its color if it is not dry cleaned), but also because of the decorative detail on your dress, such as lace, guipure, mother-of-pearl buttons or delicate embroidery. In short, choose your dry cleaners well!
« A grass stain does not clean in the same way as a wine stain or a make-up stain, help your dry cleaner in his work by specifying the nature of all the stains on your dress. »
To make your dry cleaning easier, try to bring your dress as “pure” as possible, with stains that have not already been cleaned. This may sound frustrating, but if by some misfortune you spill something on your pretty dress on your day, don’t try to clean it right away, to avoid the risk of adding to the task. You may want to tap it with a clean, dry, white cloth towel (especially no colored paper towel) to limit its effusion, but don’t overdo it. And most importantly, don’t try to clean your dress with water, touch the sun, you’d risk seeing the “bake” stain, and you’d ruin your dress more than anything else…
And since a stain of grass does not clean in the same way as a stain of wine or a trace of makeup, help your dry cleaner in his work by specifying the nature of all the stains on your dress, but also where they are located, since if some are invisible a few days after the wedding, they may reappear after a few months (such as champagne stains for example, but also perspiration stains that turn yellow after a few months if not cleaned properly). Also tell your dry cleaner that you prefer to have it washed in a clean bath, and carefully inspect your dress when you retrieve it. The colors, fluidity and suppleness of the fabric of your dress should be the same as when you bought it!
After cleaning, place in storage. And no question of relegating your dress to the cellar; your precious needs to be kept in a dry place, neither too hot nor too cold, regularly aerated. For that, nothing like your dressing room, quite simply!
Be careful though! Keeping your dress in a dry place is not enough to keep it intact. Also think about how you store it. Hang it up instead of folding it five times in a box, to prevent it from wrinkling. Use a nice fabric hanger, which can support the weight of your dress and will not stain it. Veto on metal hangers, which can deform clothing and leave rust stains over time. Also pay attention to the wooden hangers, which can end up staining your dress if the oils that come out of them reach your precious fabric.
And if you want to opt for boxed packaging (you may not have room to store your dress in your closet), prefer the ones that are created especially for that, and can contain your dress flat by limiting the folds.
Last tip: hanging on a fabric hanger in your dressing room, do not keep your dress in its carrying case, it is not for that! It does not protect your dress, and in addition, it can accelerate its deterioration (yellowing, mold, discoloration, etc), due in particular to its finesse that allows light rays to pass through. Choose a cover specially designed for this, in cotton, which will allow its preservation for many years!
Dn’t forget all your accessories, which will probably also need a small cleaning. Your veil and shoes will have to be cleaned to save them from the damage of time, as well as your jewels, which will age and deteriorate if you do not take care of them and keep them properly. If you wear them regularly after your wedding, so much the better, but if you leave them in a jewellery box, do not neglect the cleaning step regularly, to keep them, and prevent them from tarnishing.